PTH_ADD [n,] directory


Path device

First we need to explain the PTH device before you can understand what the command PTH_ADD and its related commands/ functions do.

Using sub-directories helps to clean up disk storage - even if you know on which disk a file is kept, if you are using a large storage media like HD/ED disks or even hard disks, you will soon find yourself searching through the whole directory tree with a desktop or WDIR. That’s why PTH was created.

This virtual device interfaces with any kind of drive and searches through a list of directories when a file is to be opened. For instance, instead of being forced to type:

VIEW win1_games_defender_manual_txt

a short:

VIEW pth1_manual_txt

would be enough to show the manual_txt if the directory win1_games_defender_ is in the path list.

The size of the search list is only limited by memory available; a list of 30000 entries has been tested, 900k was necessary to store it - but this is not a realistic limitation. Who works with several thousand directories?

PTH_ADD modifies that list which can have as many entries as necessary.

PTH_ADD (the name says it already) adds a directory to the path list, it can be inserted (you cannot replace pathnames!) at a certain position by directly specifying the position n (a non-negative integer) in the list.

If n is not specified, the new directory is merely added to the end of the list. The example will clarify this.


We assume the path list is empty.

PTH_ADD flp1_

will add flp1_ to the list which will now look like this (the list can be obtained with:

0 flp1_

The first column is the number of the entry, programmers tend to start counting with zero, that’s why the first entry has the number 0. If you type, for example:

SPL pth1_pth_bin,#1

the binary file pth_bin in flp1_ will be spooled to channel #1 (usually a window under the interpreter).

Now let’s add a few more entries to exploit the power of the path device:

PTH_ADD flp1_basic_
PTH_ADD flp2_
PTH_ADD ram1_

The list is now:

0 flp1_
1 flp1_basic_
2 flp2_
3 ram1_

Assume the file myprog_bas is in ram1_:

LOAD pth1_myprog_bas

tries to load the following files one by one and skips to the next one in case of failure:

  • flp1_myprog_bas

  • flp1_basic_myprog_bas

  • flp2_myprog_bas

  • ram1_myprog_bas

If myprog_bas does not appear in any of the directories, the usual ‘Not Found’ error would appear.


The name of the path device can be freely configured with the Qjump standard configuration program Config (or MenuConfig). We use the default in this manual, which is PTH. The name can be changed temporarily with PTH_USE.


PTH suffers from the same problem as the DEV device, see the note at DEV_USE.


An underscore is added to the directory if it’s missing. On this point PTH_ADD behaves differently from DEV_USE.


Some applications do not co-operate happily with PTH so that a file may get spread over all directories if you save it from some editors etc. There are no crashes, do not worry, but this strange behaviour could lead to a loss of data if you are not aware of the strange phenomenon.


The path device is very similar to the dev_ device, please read through DEV_USE to understand the idea behind both devices. It’s pretty useful to set the Toolkit II DATAD$ and PROGD$ to pth1_:

DATA_USE pth1_
PROG_USE pth1_

Do this preferably in your BOOT program. - Look at the other ‘PTH_XXX’ keywords starting at PTH_ADD!